Working in Travel
Do you feel like it's time for a career change? Are you looking to add some excitement to your life? hen you might be interested in working in travel. There are good opportunities in the travel industry, and the work will bring you in contact with a wide variety of interesting people and places. There is a plethora of jobs in travel open to practically anyone who has the interest, energy and desire to make it happen.
Air Flight AttendantThe role of air flight attendant is the first career that many people think of and associate with travel. If you're interested in becoming an air flight attendant, potential employers will be looking for good communication skills, lots of energy and enthusiasm, and a healthy dose of flexibility. Because air flight attendants also deal with safety, you'll need to be physically fit, fall within specific weight and height requirements, and be a good swimmer.
You should be educated to the GCSE level, with C grade or above in maths and English. You should be aware that there is fairly stiff competition for cabin crew jobs. To give yourself that extra edge above other potential candidates, you could study a second language if you don't already speak one. There are also relevant courses and qualifications available through Edexcel and NCFE. (For more information, read our article How To Become An Air Hostess.)
Travel AgentAnother way to work in the travel industry is to start a career as a travel agent. Travel agents are responsible for making sure that all the details of the trip are set in advance, usually working in an environment where you'll be face to face with your customers. A successful, enjoyable business trip or holiday often depends on the skill and experience of the travel agent.
There are no set qualifications for starting work as a travel agent, and the career is open to people of all different ages and backgrounds. There is also the choice of working as an employee of an agency or starting your own travel agency. Apprenticeships are available as a potential employment route, or you may simply be able to find a job and train while you are working. You'll need to be able to work well under pressure and have strong organisational skills. In addition, good numeracy skills and excellent communication skills are a must, especially on the telephone.
Learn LanguagesThere is a wide range of other jobs available in the travel industry. Practically any job you can imagine can be performed for a travel-related company. For instance, a career as a chef or Personal Assistant could easily be associated with travel, if you find the right client or company.
If you have a love for travel, a knowledge of geography, and the willingness to work at different times and places, then working in travel may be just what you need. Languages will be a big bonus if you're intending to work in travel, as it will open up many more opportunities. Sometimes work can be seasonal, such as ski instructors (for which you have to be relevantly qualified) and holiday representatives.
Getting started in travel is probably easiest for those between the ages of 18 and 24. Practically all segments of the travel industry have apprenticeships available for job seekers in this age range. If you've already been working for some time and are interested in a career change, you may discover that it is easiest to find work as a travel agent.
It's no secret that the increase in terrorism and the more volatile world situation have had an impact on the travel industry. At the same time, there is increased demand for business travel as globalisation continues. Some of the greatest opportunities in the future for working in travel will be connected with integrating travel services with the Internet.
The qualities that companies are looking for most in candidates are flexibility, enthusiasm and communication skills. If you can show prospective employers that these qualities exist in you, you should be well on your way to an exciting future working in travel.